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Coles goes to Cincinnati; Bills begin Plan B

So much for that rumor.'s Adam Schefter is reporting that free agent WR Laveranues Coles will sign with the Cincinnati Bengals.  Coles' new deal is for four years and $28 million.

Coles will replace T.J. Houshmandzadeh in Cincinnati after the former Bengal received $15 million in guarantees and $8 million annually from Seattle.

We mentioned last night (and again this morning) that the influx of free agent visitors in Buffalo today and in the coming days was indicative of the team moving on to Plan B.  The Bills are believed to have offered $6 million annually for Coles' services (though that hasn't been confirmed, and probably won't be); clearly, more money, a longer deal and the presence of QB Carson Palmer made the decision for Coles an easy one.  It's looking like Buffalo may have pulled their offer to Coles last night before scheduling their second wave of visits, but at present time we have no way of confirming that.

We're OK with Coles taking the money.  Obviously the idea of adding him to the rotation was enticing, but letting another team overpay for Coles' services is never a bad thing.  Case in point: in speaking with our resident Bengals blogger about the news, his initial reaction was, "I don't know what to say.  No one else in the NFL would pay this for Coles."

And that's the moral of the story.  You don't break the bank for anyone but the best of the best in free agency.  It's been proven time and again that overpaying for perceived impact isn't how you build a winning program.  It's frustrating, but the Bills played their cards correctly on this one.

Buffalo's initial phase of Plan B includes visits with running backs DeShaun Foster and Kevin Jones, as well as linebackers Mike Peterson, Cato June and Pat Thomas.